O Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, revealed that “there were strong indications” that the hostages from the Islamic group Hamas were in the Al-Shifa hospital, in Gaza, which justified the entry of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) into the location.
“There was strong evidence that [os reféns] they were at Al-Shifa hospital, and that was one of the reasons why we entered the hospital. If they were there, they were moved”, said the person responsible, in an interview with CBS News, this Thursday.
Netanyahu also guaranteed that Israel has “information” about the hostages, but stressed that “the less said, the better.”
Also this Thursday, White House spokesman John Kirby assured that the United States is confident in the authenticity of the information that the Islamic group Hamas used the Al-Shifa hospital as an operational center and equipment warehouse. , although he refused to share details.
BREAKING NEWS: Israeli PM Netanyahu tells me they had “strong indications” some of the hostages were held in Al-Shifa Hospital. We’ll have more of our exclusive interview tonight on the @CBSEveningNews pic.twitter.com/xoTD4FdMZC
— Norah O’Donnell 🇺🇸 (@NorahODonnell) November 16, 2023
“I’m not going to talk about specific information. That’s for Israel to reveal but, as I said the other day, we are confident in our own assessment of how Hamas was using that hospital,” said the official, quoted by the Reuters agency.
Kirby said that Hamas militants were sheltering in the hospital unit, using the facilities as a shield against military actions and putting patients and medical teams at risk.
“We have our own intelligence that convinces us that Hamas was using Al-Shifa as a command and control center and, most likely, also as a warehouse. We are still convinced of the solidity of this information,” he said.
It is worth noting that the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) announced that it had found the body of Yehudit Weiss, an Israeli citizen who had been held hostage by Hamas since October 7, in a building near Al-Shifa hospital.
The Israeli army claimed on Wednesday to have found the “operational headquarters [do Hamas]weapons and technological equipment in the MRI building at Al-Shifa hospital”, where he also eliminated members of the Islamic group.
It is worth remembering that this information has not been independently confirmed, and that Hamas has repeatedly rejected using the health institution for its military operations, considering Israel’s accusations to be a “blatant lie”. The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs also denied Israel’s statements, pointing out that “the army is in the hospital and no one knows what it is doing or what weapons it brought to claim that it found them in the compound”, in a statement cited by Al-Jazeera.
However, the organization Human Rights Watch (HRW) considered, this Thursday, that the “evidence” presented by the IDF to justify the siege of Al-Shifa hospital is insufficient to revoke the protection of that health institution under international law.
After Hamas’ surprise attack on Israeli territory, called ‘Al-Aqsa Storm’, Israel bombed from the air several installations of that armed group in the Gaza Strip, in an operation it called ‘Iron Swords’.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared that Israel is “at war” with Hamas, a group considered terrorist by Israel, the United States and the European Union (EU), having agreed with the opposition to create an emergency government national and a war cabinet.
Also Read: IDF claims to have found body of Hamas hostage near Al-Shifa
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